Reaction to charges in UAlbany bus incident, Albany High School project on hold, carjackers said to have posed as cops, Schenectady considers parking minimums

UAlbany bus incident
Reaction to the University Police Department's announcement of charges against the three women who had alleged they were the victims of an attack on a CDTA bus that included racial slurs:
+ Mark Mishler, an attorney for one of the women, in a statement: "It is also unfortunate that some in the media and public appear to have reached a conclusion as to what occurred in this incident without actually having the information needed in order to reach such a conclusion." [TU]
+ UAlbany president Robert Jones to WNYT, on his initial statements in response to the incident: "As I've said several times and I'll repeat it once more, we responded as quickly as we can, based on the information we had at the moment. And my instinct is always, anytime any of our students come forward with any kind of indication they've been hurt or harmed, we're always going to lead with compassion." [WNYT]
+ Alice Green to TWCN: "Justice demands that they be seen as innocent until proven guilty ... If someone makes a charge that's not true, we have to understand what would cause someone to do that. What can we learn from the relationships that might have existed on that bus?" [TWCN]
+ UAlbany student Sean Stone to WNYT: "It just makes it harder for if this thing actually happens. People will think that they're lying and look at this story with incredulity instead of taking this story as fact." [WNYT]

Time Warner Cable News has posted full-length versions of the CDTA camera video. And here are the 911 calls posted by News10. [TWCN] [News10]

Albany High School vote
The Albany school board has put the plan to renovate/expand Albany High School on hold pending a decision from the state Education Department about problems with the recent public vote on the project. At Thursday night's board meeting an attorney for the school district said that despite the problems at polling sites "there is no evidence that any voter was denied the right to vote or informed that they could not vote." He also said there's no evidence any of the polling site problems were intentional. [TU] [News10] [WNYT]

Superintendent(s) pay: Also Thursday in a vote near midnight, the school board approved a plan to pay former superintendent Raymond Colucciello $725 per day to serve as an advisor to current acting superintendent Kimberly Wilkins. [TU]

$15 minimum wage
Andrew Cuomo was in Albany Thursday to rally for a $15 minimum wage -- but he said he wouldn't threaten to hold up the state budget over the proposed increase. A top member of the state Senate Republican majority said there's "no support" for the $15 figure in his conference. [NYSNYS/Troy Record] [TU] [TWCN]

Guilty verdict in Schenectady murder
An Albany man was found guilty of second-degree murder in the death of Carlos Figueroa a year ago in Hamilton Hill in what prosecutors say was a pot deal in which neither side brought what it said it would bring (drugs or money). [Daily Gazette]

Alleged phone theft in Schenectady murder case
Schenectady police allege a man took two phones from the pocket of a man who had just been shot in a car in Hamilton Hill last month. [Daily Gazette]

SPD: Pair posing as cops carjacked vehicle
Schenectady police say a pair of men posed as cops when they assaulted a man and stole his car at a stoplight in the Central State neighborhood early Thursday morning. [Daily Gazette]

Arson charge in Troy
Troy police say a man is facing an arson charge for two fires downtown earlier this month. [Troy Record]

Guilty pleas in horse statue vandalism
Two men pleaded guilty to misdemeanor criminal mischief for vandalizing the Native Dancer horse statue in Saratoga Springs in November. They'll have to pay more than $3k in restitution and do 250 hours of community service. [Saratogian] [Daily Gazette]

Push to the raise the age
Albany police chief Brendan Cox was among the advocates at the Capitol Thursday pushing for the state to raise the age of criminal responsibility from 16 to 18. [TU]

Water supplies
+ The state Department of Environmental Conservation first got word of PFOA contamination of ground water in Petersburgh related to the company Taconic back in 2005, the Times Union reports. And emails obtained by Politico New York indicate the state Department of Health was aware of concerns about contamination of well water there in 2014. [TU+] [Politico NY]

+ Halfmoon and Waterford are working on a deal to connect to the Saratoga County water authority as a second source -- the towns currently buy water from Troy. [TU]

Big holes in streets
All the rain this week has slowed work on the Campbell Street sinkhole in Troy -- the rain caused further collapse and made the pit unsafe to work in. A sinkhole on Old Niskayuna Road in Colonie caught an SUV Thursday morning. [Troy Record] [TU] [WNYT]

Troy city salaries
For 2015 then-Troy mayor Lou Rosamilia's salary of $97,911 ranked #43 on the city's chart of highest pay. [TU+]

"I saw this bright glow, and I knew something was not right"
A Cohoes police officer is being credited with helping save a home and its residents from a fire. [Troy Record]

High Rock development
One of the issues at the center of the discussion over what to do with the High Rock lot in downtown Saratoga Springs: whether the mixed-use proposals for the site would provide enough parking spaces. [Daily Gazette]

Parking minimums
The debate over a proposed plan to eliminate parking minimums for residential projects in downtown Schenectady. [Daily Gazette]

New job for Yevoli
Former Albany city director of development and planning Mike Yevoli -- who went to work for Columbia Development after leaving the city job -- will be heading up the Capital Region arm of Empire State Development and serving as the executive director of the Capital Region Economic Development Council. [Biz Review]

Zika virus
Talking with a research who studies mosquito-borne viruses at the Wasdworth Lab about the Zika virus. [TU+]


The school district investigating itself? Pfft!

Awesome that Schenectady is considering removing parking requirements. Albany could maybe learn something from its neighbor

We should settle this new high school issue once and for all and just have an up or down vote on whether or not we need a re-vote.

@ Mike D With the Albany Rezoning Initiative, parking requirement minimums are being revised. While not eliminated, the proposed changes are a nice step in the right direction and seek to leverage mass transit.

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